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Punk & Hardcore

With Joe Hansen

The good people at Headspace Collingwood have helped put together a great show this Friday December 16 at Bar Open. To raise money and awareness for mental health assistance in Melbourne, the show will feature some of the city’s heaviest and most abrasive hardcore acts including SUNDR, Removalist, No Haven and Saskatchewan.
 
Reformed post-hardcore legends At the Drive-In have released new single Governed by Contagions, their first new material since 2000’s landmark full-length Relationship of Command. Taken from an as yet untitled upcoming full length. While the band’s recent live performances have been average at best, they appear energised and focused on returning to their creative peak. My bet is on a Refused reformation type scenario in reverse. They came back with incredible live shows and put out a forgettable album, while At the Drive-In have come back with average live performances but might end up putting out a good album. Let’s see how this goes.
 
New band Bloodclot, featuring Cro-Mags frontman John Joseph has released their debut single. Taken from their upcoming self-titled album to be released in early 2017, lead single Up in Arms is currently streaming. It’s absolutely sick, get amongst it.
 
A teaser trailer has been released for a documentary on legendary hardcore punk innovators Poison Idea. Forming in 1980 in Portland, Oregon, the band pushed the limits of hardcore punk through the ‘80s into the ‘90s, inspiring countless other bands taking hardcore in a dark and dangerous direction. Known for their destructive drug use and lifestyles, the band’s reformation in 2005 was cut short due to their death of founding member and lead guitarist Pig Champion. Although currently touring and releasing new music, only vocalist Jerry A remains as an original member.
 
On a personal level, Poison Idea are one of my biggest musical influences. I think on every record I’ve played on, the influence the band had on me as a guitarist and songwriter is greater than any other. Combining furious energy and speed with reckless abandon of sticking to the rules, while simultaneously handling flawless musicianship and precision, the band’s sound is something that has been rarely repeated in punk rock. If you’re new to the band, my recommendation is their 1990 full length Feel the Darkness. It’s one of the most hard-hitting and “real” punk rock albums I’ve ever heard and still sounds as fresh and confronting as ever.